Use of a perceptual evaluation instrument to assess the effects of infant orthopedics on the speech of toddlers with cleft lip and palate.
SourceCleft Palate-Craniofacial Journal, 40, 6, (2003), pp. 597-605
Article / Letter to editor
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Orthodontics and Oral Biology
Cleft Palate-Craniofacial Journal
SubjectEBP 1: Determinants of Health and Disease; Structure in Use; UMCN 3.3: Neurosensory disorders; UMCN 4.3: Tissue engineering and reconstructive surgery; EBP 1: Determinants of Health and Disease; Structuur in uitvoering
OBJECTIVE: To investigate the effects of infant orthopedics (IO) administered in the first year of life on the speech characteristics of 2.5-year-old children with complete unilateral cleft lip and palate (UCLP) using a perceptual evaluation instrument with equal-appearing interval (EAI) scales. DESIGN: In a prospective randomized clinical trial (Dutchcleft), two groups of children with complete UCLP were followed longitudinally. One group received IO based on a modified Zurich approach (IO group), and the other group did not (non-IO group). The appliance was used until soft palate closure at age 12 months. Hard palate closure is delayed until 9 years of age. PARTICIPANTS: Three groups of 2.5-year-old toddlers participated in this investigation: 10 IO, 10 non-IO, and 8 noncleft controls matched for age and socioeconomic status. METHOD: Five trained listeners assessed the children's speech in a blinded perceptual rating procedure. They judged 13 specific speech characteristics and indicated their total impression of speech on EAI scales. RESULTS: The reliability and consistency of 11 of the rating scales was good. The intelligibility rating scale was the single speech characteristic that distinguished the IO group from the non-IO group; the IO group was judged to be superior. The cleft groups differed from the noncleft group on 9 of the 11 scales. CONCLUSIONS: Evaluation of speech by means of the present newly developed perceptual rating instrument showed that the IO group obtained significantly higher ratings for intelligibility than the non-IO group. The groups did not differ regarding any of the other speech aspects.
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